Tag Archives: FEAP 4A

Reading Content Coaching – Second Observation Reflection

It has been a few weeks since I have posted. The week of March 2nd through the 6th was the USF Spring Break; however, I still came to internship on Monday and I was a substitute on Thursday and Friday, all of which were great experiences. The following week was the Hillsborough County Spring Break, and the past week I had my second and final reading content coaching observation.

I was really excited going into my shared reading lesson because I wanted to focus on what I discussed in the previous post-conference, which was making sure to use intonation and emphasis by reading the story with emotion. I had my observation on Tuesday, March 17th. We read the story “Little Rabbit’s Tale” from the Journeys text, which has the same storyline as Chicken Little. The rabbit is outside and when the wind blows, an apple hits his head and he thinks the sky is falling so he warns all of his friends and they tell his mother but she shows him the truth and he apologizes for making his friends miss out on different activities. The focus of my lesson was to analyze the author’s purpose for writing the story to determine what lesson thee author wanted to teach us.

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One thing that I used to struggle with is my presence in front of any group of people. I remember shaking when I gave a book report in the 6th grade even though I had a poster board and was reading off of an index card because I just got so nervous speaking in front of people. Throughout the years, I have taken many steps to remedy this by making myself raise my hand and share my thoughts and present in front of others. I even went so far as to take a Public Speaking course at USF to give myself more practice. During my internship experience, I have had few problems, if any, speaking to students because I am truly passionate about helping them be successful so I focus on them instead of my own worries.

Part of this former fear; however, still lingered when I read texts because I did not read with enough emotion, so this time I made sure that really got into the text. I simply took everything out of my mind except for teaching and giving my students the best experience possible with the book.

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For example, when the apple hits Little Rabbit, the text reads “Thump!” in large, red letters so each time I read that word, I leaned in next to a student and shouted while hitting the desk. The reaction from my students was immediately obvious—they laughed and became instantly engaged, which was great because I drew their attention in on the very first page. I kept reading the story like this, acting it out as well by skipping through the room like the characters as they “dashed” in the story. I also cheered “Hooray!” and jumped up like the characters.

I discussed this experience with both my collaborating teacher and the reading content coach. I was, and of course still am, very excited and I thought that I did a good job and I was pleased to discover that both my CT and the reading coach felt the same way. The reading content coach praised me for working on the skill that we had discussed and making such immediate and apparent improvement with the skill.

This current week is testing for students so I will be unable to teach reading since the testing takes up the entire morning; however, my goal is to take the lead on teaching and planning reading. For the entire last week, I took the lead on teaching the literacy block based on lesson plans that my collaborating teacher and I made together. During this week, I took the lead on planning all of the literacy block (phonics, shared reading, and writing) and I will be taking the lead on teaching it as well. My collaborating teacher will still provide support when necessary but we both agree that by taking the lead, I am gaining valuable experiences that will help me so much in the future when I am a teacher.

During this past week I also took the lead on teaching mathematics and science. The science unit that we have been learning is about living and nonliving things and we will be transitioning into plants and animals next week. In mathematics, my students learned how to tell time on both digital and analog clocks to the hour and half-hour. Although I did not plan these lesson, I taught all of the lessons on time and then gave the assessment on Friday. I am very proud to announce that out of 17 students (1 student was absent) all of my students passed with a 71% or higher on the exam. I then recorded all of this data on an excel spreadsheet that organizes it to show the scores of the students, what percentage of students got the question correct, and how many students missed each question, which allowed me to meet FEAP 4F: “Applies technology to organize and integrate assessment information.” Looking at the results, I noticed that some students still have misconceptions that I will be addressing with them during this week in the time after testing but I am so proud of my students and I am really happy to see the clear results of my teaching.

I will be taking the lead on planning mathematics for the upcoming week and I will be taking the lead on teaching it as well. I will have my mathematics content coaching observation on Wednesday. According to the district calendar, the next unit is 3D shapes but during a Professional Learning Communities (PLC) meeting with all of the first grade teachers at my school, we decided it would be more developmentally appropriate to do 2D shapes next and then 3D shapes.

I was so excited to finally have an opportunity to take the lead on teaching all subject areas. For the remainder of my internship, I hope to take the lead on both planning and teaching all subject areas (with some assistance from my collaborating teacher) to help me improve my teaching skills. I am so thankful for the support from my collaborating teacher, my instructors, and the content coaches for helping me achieve this.

Reading Content Coaching – Week 2

This is the second week of reading content coaching. My collaborating teacher and I have been co-planning and co-teaching the literacy block and she has granted me the opportunity to take the lead on planning and some teaching. We plan out a phonics block, a read aloud, shared reading, high-frequency words, writing, and guided reading for each day. I am excited for all of the progress that I have made so far and what I will accomplish in the upcoming weeks. I will be observed on Tuesday for a shared reading lesson that I helped plan and I should be taking the lead on teaching the other days of this lesson as well. Currently, we co-teach for the majority of literacy and I hope to take the lead on literacy in the upcoming months.

I currently have two guided reading groups, the high reading group and the below level reading group. My high group will begin a chapter book next week. I want to begin this type of book because all of these students have started reading chapter books. I want to help them better understand the books so they will be successful and continue to grow as readers. For my low group, we practice sight words as well as the phonics strategies of the week. For example, last week we worked on the “ai” “ay” sounds and my students practiced sounding out and spelling words using magnetic letters. Next week, this group will focus on “ar,” “or” and “-ore” for phonics and both groups will focus on determining the main idea of a text or chapter.

I write about the Florida Educator Accomplished Practices (FEAPs) in all of my blog posts because these are the principles that I need to meet as an educator. Last week, I met with my PRT supervisor and my collaborating teacher to determine what areas I have accomplished and what areas I should focus on in order to continually improve my teaching, which allowed me to meet FEAP 1D: “Engages in targeted professional growth opportunities and reflection both independently and in collaboration with colleagues.”

One area that I will work on is my communication with parents and students. I have already worked on meeting this goal by actively participating in all Conference Nights at my school and writing home notes to parents. I will continue to work on this goal for the remainder of the semester. One way that I worked on this professional goal is by writing a note home to parents informing them about the award that our class won for our STEM Fair project. I typed up and sent home the note to invite parents to the event, which was fantastic. We had a few students come and they were able to explain all of their hard work to their parents and show them their STEM Logs that contain all of their work, which was another opportunity for me to work with parents.

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I was also happy because one parent wrote back in the agenda to congratulate our class for their work.

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I have also been working on communicating with parents about both positive and negative behaviors. I have never called a parent before but I have written in agendas many times in all of my internship classrooms. I attempted to call a parent last week but unfortunately the parent did not respond. One aspect of communication that I want to emphasize is positive notes and phone calls because parents always appreciate hearing about the hard work that a student has done and sometimes they simply hear the “bad news” instead of the great things their child has accomplished. When I interact with parents in person or through notes, I always make sure to focus on the positives and what can be done to help the student improve in the future.

With communication, I have also been focusing on providing immediate and specific feedback to students, which is related to FEAPs 3I and 4A. One way that I have been meeting these FEAPs is by teaching my students test-taking skills and going over test practice that we do as morning work to prepare for the upcoming standardized tests. In the morning, students complete the work by themselves which consists of either multiple choice questions, math word problems, or questions about a text. We then figure out the answers together as a group and use test taking strategies such as referring back to the text, checking all responses, and crossing out incorrect responses. After we finish, the students write “Checked Together” on their papers or we stamp their pages. By taking a small amount of time to do this, the students receive immediate feedback about their work and they are able to learn from their mistakes and see how to prevent them in the future.

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            I am excited and slightly nervous about my observation next week but I have been working hard and taking the lead in shared reading before so I think I will do well. I am excited to receive feedback from the reading content coach so I can continue to improve my teaching. The following week, March 2nd through 6th is the USF Spring Break so the residents are not required to come to internship. I will be a substitute for two days that week and I would like to come in and work in my classroom. The following week, March 9th through 13th is the Hillsborough County Spring Break and therefore I will be unable to attend my internship. I am always sad to be away from my students, which is why I will make sure to come in and visit them. I will also make sure that I am still able to plan with my collaborating teacher so I understand what will be happening in the classroom when I am not there and what we will be doing after Spring Break. I planned a STEM lesson that is science heavy a few months ago in my Teaching Elementary Science class, which is about the needs of living organisms (butterflies) and how to meet those needs with their habitats and I hope to teach that lesson after Spring Break.

Mathematics Lesson Plan – Basic Facts to Twenty Reflection

Math – Week 1 – Lesson Plan – Adding And Subtracting Within Twenty

Nicole L Pre Observation Coaching Lesson Document (PPQT) 11.17.14

Math – Week 1 – Lesson Plan Draft 2 – Adding And Subtracting Within Twenty

Math – Week 1 – Pose Purposeful Questions Reflection Tool

The mathematics content coaching cycle was a bit different than the previous content coaching cycles. For this cycle, the mathematics coach will focus on three or four residents each week. I designed and implemented my lesson plan for mathematics in the first week. The mathematics coach wants to make sure that she gives everyone ample time to perform a pre-conference, observation, and post-conference so it was decided that each resident would receive specific coaching for one week. I will continue to work with my collaborating teacher to co-plan and co-teach mathematics during the semester but at this point in time, I will not participate in the content coaching observation cycle for the remainder of the semester.

Before my mathematics lesson, I met with the mathematics content coach to discuss my five page lesson plan and how I would pose purposeful questions. We talked through some of the elements of the five page lesson plan such as the goals, possible misconceptions, and prior knowledge but the main focus was on question types. It is important for me to not only use and create higher order thinking (HOT) questions but to pose questions of various types to elicit student thinking. There are four types of questions that we analyzed: gathering information, probing thinking, making mathematics visible, and encouraging reflection and justification. I believe that it is important to focus on these questions so that I do not only ask questions on the lower levels of Bloom’s taxonomy. By working with the mathematics coach on my questioning, I met FEAP 3F – “Employ higher-order questioning techniques.” We worked together to create questions for each framework and I determined how I would use them in my lesson.

After our discussion, I revised my lesson plan to change some of the questions, add new questions, and charge the order of some questions in my lesson. The majority of my lesson plan was the same. I aligned my lesson with the standards MAFS.1.OA.1.1
“Use addition and subtraction within 20 to solve word problems involving situations of adding to, taking from, putting together, taking apart, and comparing, with unknowns in all positions, e.g., by using objects, drawings, and equations with a symbol for the unknown number to represent the problem” and MAFS.1.OA.3.6 – “Add and subtract within 20, demonstrating fluency for addition and subtraction within 10. Use strategies such as counting on; making ten,; decomposing a number leading to a ten; using the relationship between addition and subtraction; and creating equivalent but easier or known sums by creating the known equation.” This allowed me to meet FEAP 1A –  “Aligns instruction with state-adopted standards at the appropriate level of rigor.”

For this lesson, I designed my own groups based on previous data that I collected through anecdotal notes and observations. This allowed me to meet FEAP 3H – “Differentiate instruction based on an assessment of student learning needs and recognition of individual differences in students.” There were a few students that I believed would need additional support for the lesson. I collected data through observations and used this to inform my instruction by pulling a small group as the other students worked in pairs. I designed the assessments based on the abilities of my students to match their learning needs. This allowed me to meet FEAP 4B – Designs and aligns formative and summative assessments that match learning objectives and lead to mastery as well as FEAP 4D – “Modifies assessments and testing conditions to accommodate learning styles and varying levels of knowledge.”

When I implemented the lesson, I modified it in order to meet the needs of my students and address their misconceptions, which allowed me to meet FEAP 3D – “Modify instruction to respond to preconceptions or misconceptions.” I asked the students to show me two ways to make ten. We listed these methods on the board and I asked them if there were other ways to make ten. After we had about five methods (all addition) on the board, I asked how many ways we can make ten. Not surprisingly, my students counted the methods on the board. I decided to take the time to show my students there are many ways to make ten using addition of two and three addends as well as subtraction. I tried to grant the students the opportunity to list ways to make ten without explicitly mentioning using three addends or subtraction. After some gentle pushes, the students grasped the concept and realized that there are a lot of ways to make ten.

I wanted to highlight this point because I want my students to become familiar with the various basic facts within twenty. My students have been working on balancing equations on each sides of the number line and finding equations that are equal. This lesson connected to these previous lessons by showing students there are multiple number sentences that equal ten or any other number. By doing this, I met FEAP 1B – “Sequences lessons and concepts to ensure coherence and required prior knowledge.”

After my lesson, I watched the recording and took notes about my questioning strategies and the types of questions that I asked. One important aspect of my teaching that I noticed is that the majority of my questions were unplanned. This is important to know so I can focus on planning more questions ahead of time. This could also show how I respond to my students. I noticed that I repeated some questions a lot such as “are there more ways to make ten?” I did this because I wanted to probe my students’ thinking without explicitly telling them to use subtraction or three addends to find a number. In the end, they needed some guidance to understand this concept but I assumed this would occur. My students typically have more success with addition as compared to subtraction. I assumed that my students would easily see the addition facts and need some help finding subtraction facts, which is what occurred. This shows me that my collaborating teacher and I should provide extra support in the area of subtraction and provide our students with many opportunities to practice subtraction. This allows me to meet FEAP 4A – “Analyzes and applies data from multiple assessments and measures to diagnose students’ learning needs, informs instruction based on those needs, and drives the learning process.”

As always, I am excited to continue taking the lead on planning and teaching various subjects in the classroom. I hope to continue co-teaching mathematics with my collaborating teacher and taking the lead on lessons to increase my comfort level with mathematics and gain more experience. I am excited to continue focusing on mathematics in the upcoming weeks even if I do not participate in formal observations and conferences.

Reading Lesson Plan – Shared Reading – Poetry

Reading – Week 2 – Lesson Plan – Shared Reading – Poems

Reading – Week 2 – Poems

For this week, I co-planned a shared reading lesson with the reading content coach to meet the standard LAFS.1.RL.2.4 – Identify words and phrases in stories or poems that suggest feelings or appeal to the senses. By doing this, I met FEAP 1A: “aligns instruction with state-adopted standards at the appropriate level of rigor.” I really appreciated the insight of the reading content coach. He gave me ideas of differentiation for the lesson to meet the needs of all of my students. In the end, we decided on a guided release process that reflected “I do, we do, you do.” In the beginning of the lesson, the class and I read through a poem called “Happiness” to explicitly explain and show the students how the author helps us visualize the poem through the senses.

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I really liked this poem because it explicitly mentions the senses, which really helps the students picture the poem. We read the poem line by line and pictured each part. Then the students came up with their own titles for the poem such as “Happiness” or “Having Fun.”

After this discussion, we read “Quack! Quack!” by Dr. Seuss which connected with the other lessons of the week because we were studying Dr. Seuss. The students had their own copies of the poem in their Journey’s books and, in groups, they picked out the words that helped them visualize the poem and chose the senses that they used when they pictured the poem in their minds. This allowed me to meet FEAP 1D: “Selects appropriate formative assessments to monitor learning” as well as FEAP 4B: “Designs and aligns formative and summative assessments that match learning objectives and lead to mastery.” My collaborating teacher, the reading content coach, and I all walked around the room to listen in on the conversations and provide the students with support.

Based on what I heard, I determined that the students were ready for more practice and split them into groups based on their reading levels using their guided reading groups as a guide. By doing this, I met FEAP 4A: “Analyzes and applies data from multiple assessments and measures to diagnose students’ learning needs, informs instruction based on those needs, and drives the learning process.” I used the data of running records and Developmental Reading Assessments (DRAs) as well as anecdotal notes and observations to inform my choice for the makeup of each group. I then decided that I would pull a small group of students to because I felt they needed the most support in the skill.

I chose poems that I believed the students of each group could read and then analyze using the skill. This allowed me to meet FEAP 2H: “Adapts the learning environment to accommodate the differing needs and diversity of students” as well as FEAP 3H: “Differentiate instruction based on an assessment of student learning needs and recognition of individual differences in students.” Instead of using one poem that met the needs of the core students, the reading content coach and I decided to split the class into groups. I chose the makeup of each group and the poems for these groups. I worked alongside one of the groups by reading the poem out loud to these students so the vocabulary would not limit them as they analyzed the poem. I was very surprised to see that after a few read alouds, the students were able to pick out specific words that allowed them to visualize the poem. It was slightly difficult for them to articulate their thoughts but I think this further proved that my support was necessary to help these students be successful when using this skill.

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(The poem above was taken from http://www.canteach.ca/elementary/songspoems.html)

 

I used the poem above when working with my small group. They were able to quickly tell me that the words “sizzle” and “pop” helped them hear the popcorn cooking. The students had some difficulty making the connection between sight and pouring the oil in the pot and putting in the popcorn; however, they were able to visualize this idea and pick out these words.

At the end of the lesson, we had a debrief where each group came up and shared their poem. I noticed that the students had some difficulty articulating their thoughts but I could tell based on the writing on their papers that they understood the concept. For example, on group circled the phrase “hot air” in the poem below but the group members needed some help to determine which sense they used [touch] to visualize it. The group also circled phrases like “light and tasty” as well as “swirling.”

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Another group read the following poem and circled all of the color words because they could see all of the colors.

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They also explained that they could taste the carrot and cherry pie as well as the other foods.

 

I believe that my students were able to pick up on the skill during my lesson. I hope that they will continue to use it in the future in order to help their comprehension of poetry as well as stories. Next week, I will be teaching a lesson that helps students pick out words that relate to feelings, which is the other part of that standard. By teaching this lesson, I will meet FEAP 1B: “Sequences lessons and concepts to ensure coherence and required prior knowledge.” For content coaching next week, I will again teach shared reading. I will help my students again use the skill of visualization; however, for this lesson students will learn to use visualization to help draw inferences based on details in the text as well as illustrations. I believe that this poetry lesson helped give my students the necessary background knowledge for my shared reading lesson for next week.